GREGORY DEAN CAMP

(by Gary Signor)

Farewell old friend, band mate, brother, husband, and father. Your voice, your music, will live in our hearts and minds, a sweet memory of soaring notes, soulfully and effortlessly delivered.

For those of us who were lucky enough to have shared this musical odyssey with you, we knew a man who was a little bit outlaw, like "Jesse James", of whom you so eloquently wrote, a little bit of that "Kansas Cowboy", even though you were a Missouri boy through and through, and a lot of Irish, which as we all know, got you into more than a little trouble over the years. We know too that you would bristle at any flowery prose or weepy sentiment, and Lord knows, we wouldn't want to make you mad (just kidding old friend), so we'll "keep it real" as the tragically hip might say, because you were THE REAL DEAL, Greg. As talented and deeply profound as anyone out there. John Prine had nothin on you babe. You are loved. You will be missed. You touched our lives with your songs...and that voice...my God, that voice.

Farewell old friend, farewell.

Gregory Dean Camp passed away on Tuesday, July 21 at the Overland Park Regional Hospital. He was born on October 15, 1949, in St. Joseph, Mo. He attended Central High School there. He learned to play the guitar at the age of 10 from his brother Steve and friend Larry Buck. He spent his early years playing music in and around St. Joe, where life-long bonds were formed with many other talented musicians, among them, Butch Dillon, Jimmy Harlow, Ted Paxon, Mike Harvey, Jerry Allen, Ron Weir, and others.

In the late sixties he was the singer, songwriter, and guitarist for the band White Eyes, a mainstay at the old Cowtown Ballroom. Some of his songs from that era are featured in the recently released documentary "Cowtown Ballroom, Sweet Jesus". It was during those years that a special bond was formed with artists such as Brewer and Shipley, Danny Cox, and The Ozark Mountain Daredevils, to name a few.

In 1975, Greg and Jimmy Harlow formed the first Camp Harlow Band in Aspen, Colo. with ex White Eyes members Roger Workman and Tim Shields, along with former Brewer and Shipley drummer, Gary Signor. Following that, Greg returned to Kansas City to be a solo artist, as well as writing and recording many wonderful original songs. During this time Greg also enjoyed stints with bands such as U.S.A. (out of St. Joe.), River Rock, and Blazing Saddles, before reforming the original Camp Harlow Band in 1991 to play the matinee at The Tuba, a local venue owned by Greg’s former St. Joe band mate Mile Harvey.

It was here that the most incredible bond of all began with the love affair between The Camp Harlow Band and it's extended family of loyal matinee-goers. Though too numerous to mention, I know that Greg would want to acknowledge the first of those, Andy and Karen Cook, as well as Larry and Pat Quirk, Bill and Liz Brinton, Don and Catherine O'Brien, and Mark(Cuda) Raynes, all of whom are still regulars to this day, as the matinee continues after 15 years at The Levee. For the past ten years or so the bands' lineup has been Bruce Sidener, Steve Nierman, and original members Greg, Jimmy, and Gary. Greg also co-hosted the Brew Jam at the 75th St. Brewery, with Mark Valentine, a gig that also lasted 15 years for Greg. In addition to those long running gigs, he also performed at many other local venues with his good friends Tom Hall and Rick Yord.

Greg’s influence on the Kansas City blues, rock, folk, and country music scene is immeasurable, as anyone who has ever played with him or heard him play will attest. The void left by his passing can never be filled, but his musical legacy will live on as we continue to play his songs. "Each day that goes by, WE love you more..." God speed brother.

Greg was preceded in death by his parents Robert and Catherine Camp. He is survived by his wife Jennifer and son Colt, brother Bob, St. Joseph, MO. and Steve, Atchison, KS., nieces Leslie and Amy, nephews Mark, Chris and Scott and 5 great nephews. All friends and fans of Greg’s are invited to gather at the Levee, 16 W. 43rd Street, KC, MO. to remember, share and celebrate Greg’s life this coming Saturday, July 25th from 5:00 pm - 8:00 pm.

Donations to the “Greg Camp Family Assistance Fund” can be mailed to: 7823 Woodland Drive, Shawnee, KS. 66218